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UAV/RPA Crew Recognition and Honours

tomahawk6

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The future of aviation I suspect will be this new career field.The rotorheads wont like this one iota.So I suspect at some point the brainiacs will come up with a different set of wings so they can tell the difference between those that leave the ground and those that do it virtually. ;D

http://www.armytimes.com/news/2007/04/army_UAV_awards_070403w/

UAV operators now eligible for aviation awards
By Jim Tice - Staff writer
Posted : Tuesday Apr 3, 2007 17:00:58 EDT

Soldiers who operate unmanned aerial vehicles now are eligible for award of the Aviation Badge, Distinguished Flying Cross and Air Medal.

The policy change will be included in an upcoming revision of Army Regulation 600-8-22 (Military Awards).

Under the new policy, approved last month, unmanned aerial vehicle system warrant officers and enlisted operators may be awarded the DFC or AM “if they are physically located on the aircraft (system) during the cited period, and all criteria for the decorations have been met.”

The Distinguished Flying Cross is a prestigious decoration that ranks just behind the Silver Star as a valor medal. It is awarded for heroism or extraordinary achievement.

The Air Medal is awarded for heroism, outstanding achievement or meritorious service. It ranks behind the Bronze Star, but in front of the Army Commendation Medal.

There are three degrees of Aviation Badges, which previously were called Aircraft Crewmember Badges.

The Basic Aviation Badge is awarded upon successful completion of advanced individual training in a designated career field or military occupational specialty, and to warrant officers upon successful completion of the MOS 150U (tactical UAV operations technician).

Officers who hold MOS 350U or 350K will be awarded the Basic Aviation Badge retroactively to their date of graduation from the qualification course.

The newly qualifying enlisted specialties are:

• MOS 96U (UAV operator) from Aug. 1, 1993, through Sept. 30, 2003.

• MOS 35K (UAV operator) from Oct. 1, 2007, through Sept. 30, 2008.

• The 68-series MOSs from Dec. 31, 1985, through Sept. 30, 2003.

• Soldiers who completed advanced individual training in CMF 28 before Sept. 30, 1973.

The Senior Aviation Badge is awarded upon successful completion of seven years in flight status, or 10 years of non-flight experience in a principal duty assignment for designated specialties.

The new qualifying career fields and MOSs for enlisted soldiers and warrant officers are:

• MOS 96U (UAV operator) from Aug. 1, 1993, through Sept. 30, 2003.

• MOS 35K (UAV operator) from Oct. 1, 2007, through Sept. 30, 2008.

• 68-series MOSs from Dec. 31, 1985, through Sept. 30, 2003.

• Warrant officers in MOS 150A (tactical UAV operations technician), and officers in 150A who had 10 or more years of experience in 350U and 350K.

The Master Aviation Badge is awarded upon successful completion of 15 years in flight status, or 17 years of non-flight experience in a principal duty assignment for designated specialties.

The new qualifying career fields and MOSs for enlisted soldiers and warrants are:

• MOS 96U (UAV operator) from Aug. 1, 1993, through Sept. 30, 2003.

• MOS 35K (UAV operator) from Oct. 1, 2007, through Sept. 30, 2008.

• Warrant officers in MOS 150A, 151U and 151A. Officers in these specialties may qualify for the badge after 17 years of experience in 350U and 150K, enlisted CMF 68 or 93, or enlisted MOS 71P, 96U or 35K.
 
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MikeL

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http://www.marinecorpstimes.com/news/2013/02/military-new-medal-for-drone-pilots-outranks-bronze-star-021313/

New medal for drone pilots outranks Bronze Star
By Andrew Tilghman - Staff writer
Posted : Wednesday Feb 13, 2013 16:37:27 EST
The Pentagon is creating a new high-level military medal that will recognize drone pilots and, in a controversial twist, giving it added clout by placing it above some traditional combat valor medals in the military’s “order of precedence.”

The Distinguished Warfare Medal will be awarded to pilots of unmanned aircraft, offensive cyber war experts or others who are directly involved in combat operations but who are not physically in theater and facing the physical risks that warfare historically entails.

The new medal will rank just below the Distinguished Flying Cross. It will have precedence over — and be worn on a uniform above — the Bronze Star with Valor device, a medal awarded to troops for specific heroic acts performed under fire in combat.

The new medal is a brass pendant, nearly two inches tall, with a laurel wreath that circles a globe. An eagle is in the center. The ribbon has blue, red and white stripes.

“This award recognizes the reality of the kind of technological warfare we are engaged in the 21st century,” Defense Secretary Leon Panetta told reporters in Washington on Wednesday.

The new medal will be awarded for specific acts, such as the successful targeting of a particular individual at a critical time.

“Our military reserves its highest decorations obviously for those who display gallantry and valor in actions when their lives are on the line and we will continue to do so,” Panetta said.

“But we should also have the ability to honor the extraordinary actions that make a true difference in combat operations,” Panetta said. “The contribution they make does contribute to the success of combat operations, particularly when they remove the enemy from the field of battle, even if those actions are physically removed from the fight.”

The service secretaries will make the final determination for awarding the Distinguished Warfare Medal.

The order of precedence came as a surprise to Doug Sterner, a military medals expert and the curator of the Military Times Hall of Valor, the largest database of military medal recipients.

“It’s got me puzzled,” Sterner said in an interview Wednesday. “I understand the need to recognize the guys at the console who are doing some pretty important things. But to see it ranking above the Bronze Star [with] V?”
 

Journeyman

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Should this not have been posted under "Dumbest Thing Heard"?    ::)



....mind you, my Peacekeeping Medal trumps everything but my Afghan medal, so.....    :not-again:
 
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jollyjacktar

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It's almost up there with being Bibered.    :nod:
 

tomahawk6

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Agreed.We have reached a new level of retardedness if thats a word.
 
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MikeL

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http://www.duffelblog.com/2012/12/drone-pilot-to-receive-first-air-force-medal-of-honor-since-vietnam/
 

cupper

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It's the whole "Let's just give everyone a ribbon so they don't feel left out or a lesser person." touchy feely thing.
 

Shamrock

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Can't wait for the recipients of the Combat Dronesman Badge calling the infantry pogues.
 

dimsum

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I'm sure the Duffel Blog's writers are just killing themselves in ironic laughter right now. 

I completely understand and advocate a medal for UAV operations, as those folks are essentially on "deployed" (as in shifts, workload, etc.) or actually deployed for launch/recovery crews in the fun places in the world, but to have it ranked higher than a Bronze Star?  That's a little rich.
 

daftandbarmy

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Distinguished Warfare Medal

February 18, 2013: The U.S. Department of Defense has, for the second time in a decade, decided to create a new medal for extraordinary behavior in combat for those who are not holding down a traditional combat job. This time it’s a medal for Cyber War experts, UAV operators, and anyone else who makes an exceptional effort towards the winning of a combat operation without actually being there. Called the Distinguished Warfare Medal, it will provide a way of recognizing such accomplishments. Previously the military had “meritorious service” awards for this sort of thing but this new medal recognizes achievement in the combat zone by people who are not there. This is all because you now have a lot more people who are linked, in real time, to the battlefield. For UAV operators it’s normal to see and hear the combat and make life or death decisions while virtually involved. There is some stress associated with this, and even the risk of PTSD. But combat troops are not happy with the Pentagon calling the Distinguished Warfare Medal a “combat” award. The people at the Department of Defense who came up with this appear to have ignored thousands of years of military history. Going into combat where the other guy can kill you is a very special kind of job. One of the perks you gave to those who did it was recognition that they were special. The Distinguished Warfare Medal is seen as being disrespectful towards the combat troops who risk their lives. There have always been support troops who rendered essential and often extraordinary service. No one in that position ever expected a medal deemed superior to the lowest battlefield heroism awards.



http://www.strategypage.com/htmw/htmoral/articles/20130218.aspx
 

Journeyman

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DWM.jpg
    ;)
 

OldSolduer

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Is this for real or are you guys cooking up an elaborate joke?

And "retardedness" is a word. I use it all the time along with "smoothlier".
 

Edward Campbell

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Jim Seggie said:
Is this for real or are you guys cooking up an elaborate joke?

And "retardedness" is a word. I use it all the time along with "smoothlier".


Sadly, I'm pretty sure the news story is real; for satire see this.

But, you know, it is the US of A, and it is the US of A's military, so how long until:

    1. The satire becomes reality; and

    2. Canada decides it's a good idea just because the Americans do it?
 

OldSolduer

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E.R. Campbell said:
    2. Canada decides it's a good idea just because the Americans do it?

I'll start working on that right now. >:D

It's like the "participation medal" every kid gets at sports events.
 

daftandbarmy

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'Never send a human to do a robot's job'

So let's give the medal to the robots. I can't stand it when we discriminate against our cybernetic, war winning, human life saving friends.  ;D
 

Jarnhamar

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Giving a medal to someone doing a job that a 12 year old can do that superceeds a medal awarded for being wounded in combat or for heroism  is a wonderful idea.  They should probably get some sort of danger pay while they're at it.
 

daftandbarmy

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ObedientiaZelum said:
Giving a medal to someone doing a job that a 12 year old can do that superceeds a medal awarded for being wounded in combat or for heroism  is a wonderful idea.  They should probably get some sort of danger pay while they're at it.

Drone Pilot Ejects From Office Chair

http://www.theglobaledition.com/drone-pilot-ejects-from-office-chair/

;D
 

cupper

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I was listening to an interview driving back from Pennsylvania today about this very subject with Peter Singer, director of the 21st Century Defense Initiative and a senior fellow in foreign policy at the Brookings Institution.

http://www.npr.org/2013/02/19/172412891/op-ed-its-time-to-recognize-the-valor-of-cyber-warfare

He makes a couple of good points in the interview:

SINGER:Oh, it's an odd sort of medal, in that the very description of it, the official description says that it, quote, "may not be awarded for valor in combat under any circumstances," which we've never seen happen in a medal before. Essentially, the idea is that it's to recognize accomplishments that are exceptional and outstanding, but not bounded in any geographic or chronologic manner - that is, it's not taking place in the combat zone. And so, essentially, it's recognizing that people can now do extraordinary things because of the new technologies that we're using in war, drones and cyber, but that the system wasn't prepared to recognize them.

SINGER: Well, it's interesting. It goes to what you're trying to recognize with a medal, with an award. Is it the hardships that a person faces, or is what the medal designation says is to recognize something, quote, "so exceptional and outstanding as to clearly set the individual apart from comrades or from other persons in similar situations."

So, you know, traditionally, medals have not been about saying, well, you had a really tough time of it. That's the only one that fits into that category, is the Purple Heart. But for all the others, it's to recognize that you've done something extraordinary, something different than others in a similar situation. And that's the category that this medal is for. It's not saying it's the same thing as a combat medal. It's saying it's not for combat.

So I think, again, it turns on what our notions of medals and what are they for and what's the role they play in war? But I should put my finger on one part of it, though, is that part of why this has been controversial, not in the public but within the military, is not the creation of the medal itself but it's precedence; that is, where one can wear it. And that's where there's been a lot of controversy in the military because if it was (unintelligible)

HEADLEE: The rank, you mean, of this - yeah.

SINGER: Yeah, the rank of it, is that someone will be able to wear it above a bronze star with valor, which is something that's awarded for combat. And so, that's what a lot of the controversy within the military has been. It's not been about the medal itself but the precedence, the rank of the medal. And, again, that's, you know, something to go back and forth on. You know, there's an argument to be made there. I can see it.

SINGER: Well, I think it's two things. One, Mark put his finger on the really heart of the controversy within the military right now, which is not, you know, can we recognize these people, but where in the precedent should it be set? And, frankly, that's, you know, something the military is going to have to work out. I'm not in the position to say, hey, it should be above or below bronze or above or below silver. To me, the fact that by its very definition, it's very clear that it is, you know, again, this is the definition. It may not be awarded for valor in combat. It's an indicator that this is a medal, but it's also something different.

But there's a second part to this that - I mean, I'm a little bit concerned about from this heat, from this controversy around it, is that the first time this medal is awarded, it's going to go to someone who's done something extraordinary for the nation. And yet, the reality is they're probably going to be mocked by a fairly significant portion of the military and or the Twittersphere, or however you want to say it. That is, we're going to focus on what was not done rather than was done. And that's a shame, in a certain way, coming out of this controversy.

Full transcript at the link.

As Singer indicates, the medal is not an award for bravery or valor, and not issued as a combat medal. It recognizes extraordinary and outstanding accomplishments by those who serve with the new technologies of drone warfare, cyberwarfare, and other areas where there currently is no other means of recognition other than commendations or citations. But by putting it's precedence above the Bronze Star diminishes the potential sacrifice that is implied with the Bronze Star should never have occurred.
 
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